Popular drinks and treats “increase risk of deadly diseases,” scientists warn

POPULAR drinks and treats can increase risk of deadly disease by up to 70 percent, scientists warn.

They studied high fructose corn syrup — a type of sugar added to a range of foods.

Cookies are among the foods that high fructose corn syrup could be added to


Cookies are among the foods that high fructose corn syrup could be added toPhoto credit: Getty

Fructose is a natural sugar found in fruit, fruit juices, some vegetables, honey and many healthy diets.

But when processed into corn syrup, it becomes a key ingredient in foods like fizzy drinks, candy, cookies and ice cream.

It’s also added to everyday products that may surprise you, like jams, condiments (ketchup and BBQ sauce), and sweet granola bars.

Corn syrup — sometimes called “glucose-fructose syrup” — could contribute to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), according to a new study.

NAFLD is the term for a range of disorders caused by a buildup of fat in the liver.

First of all, it is not considered harmful.

But it can lead to serious liver damage, including cirrhosis (scarring), if it gets worse, which can then lead to life-threatening liver failure or liver cancer.

Five per cent of UK adults have advanced NAFLD, where the liver already has some scarring, says the British Liver Trust.

About 24 percent of adults in the US have NAFLD.

The lead author of the study, Dr. Theodore Friedman, of Charles R. Drew University, California, said: “Some studies suggest that consumption of high fructose corn syrup is linked to the development of NAFLD.”

dr Friedman and colleagues studied nearly 3,300 people and found that nearly half of Mexican Americans were among those consuming the highest amounts of fructose in the United States.

And the highest prevalence of NAFLD was among Mexican Americans.

Doctors diagnosed seven out of 10 Mexican-American adults who regularly consume fructose with NAFLD, according to findings presented at the Endocrine Society’s annual meeting.

dr Friedman said “high fructose consumption was associated with a higher risk of NAFLD in the general population and in Mexican Americans.”

This is true even after accounting for other risk factors for NAFLD, e.g. B. whether someone smoked or played sports.

In the UK, consumption of high fructose corn sugar is significantly lower than in the US – 65 times as much, according to Diabetes UK.

Smoking, obesity, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol are factors that increase the likelihood of NAFLD.

Therefore, one can not only reduce junk food but also help prevent the condition by exercising, quitting smoking, and maintaining a healthy weight.

Liver disease, of which NAFLD is a part, is the third leading cause of early deaths in the UK and 90 per cent of cases are preventable.

Most cases of liver disease are alcohol-related (60 percent).

The British Liver Trust warned last week that Britain is in the midst of a liver disease crisis.

Deaths from liver disease have more than doubled in the country over the past 20 years.

Liver disease is often diagnosed late because symptoms are either vague or absent in the early stages. Popular drinks and treats “increase risk of deadly diseases,” scientists warn

Sarah Y. Kim

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